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Eaton Primary School

Learning Together through Challenge

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Eaton’s History Curriculum

Our Curriculum Drivers are to promote resilience, develop communication and ensure all pupils have access to all learning possibilities both in and out of the classroom.

‘A people without the knowledge of their past history, origin and culture is like a tree without roots’ 
Marcus Garvey


Our Curriculum Intent is for pupils to know more, do more and learn more.


History draws upon prior learning, wherever the content is taught. The structure is built around the principles of advancing cumulative knowledge, chronology, change through cause and consequence, as well as making connections within and throughout periods of time studied.


History is planned so that the retention of knowledge is much more than just ‘in the moment knowledge’. The cumulative nature of the curriculum is made memorable by the implementation of Bjork’s desirable difficulties, including retrieval and spaced retrieval practice, word building and deliberate practice tasks. This powerful interrelationship between structure and research-led practice is designed to increase substantive knowledge and accelerate learning within and between study modules. That means the foundational knowledge of the curriculum is positioned to ease the load on the working memory: new content is connected to prior learning.


The effect of this cumulative model supports opportunities for children to associate and connect with significant periods of time, people, places and events. Our History curriculum strategically incorporates a range of modules that revisit, elaborate and sophisticate key concepts, events, people and places.

A guiding principle of CUSP History is that pupils become ‘more expert’ with each study and grow an ever broadening and coherent mental timeline.

What do we teach?


Substantive concepts such as nationality, rights, society, community, democracy, invasion, civilisation, power are taught from y1 to y6.


Historical enquiry skills such as chronology, cause and consequence, change and continuity, similarity and difference, evidence and significance.

Year Group Area of Study:


  • Understanding chronology and how things change over time – past and present
  • Recognising significant people in our lives and within our community


Year 1

  • Changes within living memory – shops and the local high street
  • The lives of significant people including, Mary Anning, David Attenborough


Year 2

  • Events beyond living memory – The Great fire of London (revisit)
  • Local History study – Victorian Times, Bernardo, 1940


Year 3

  • Changes in Britain from the Stone Age to the Iron Age – with a Bronze and Iron Age comparison
  • The Roman Empire and its influence on Britain


Year 4

  • Britain settlement by Anglo-Saxon and Scots
  • The Viking and Anglo-Saxon struggle for the Kingdom of England to the time of Edward the Confessor
  • The achievements of the earliest civilisations – Ancient Egypt


Year 5

  • A non-European society that provides contrast with British History – Maya c AD 900. Compare location, settlement, people, culture and invention between Anglo-Saxon and Maya c AD 900
  • Ancient Greece – a study of Greek life and achievements and their influence on the western world.


Year 6

  • A study of an aspect or theme in British history that extends pupils’ knowledge beyond 1066 – The Windrush generation
  • A study of an aspect or theme in British history that extends pupils’ knowledge beyond 1066 – Monarchs through time

How do pupils learn?


Each unit includes an overview for teacher which details the big idea that pupils will be studying, prior knowledge, skills to be taught through chronology, evidence and connecting history through time and common misconceptions to be challenged. 

Dual coded knowledge organisers contain core information for children to easily access and use as a point of reference and as a means of retrieval practise.  The sequence of learning makes clear essential and desirable knowledge, key questions and task suggestions for each lesson and suggested cumulative quizzing questions.

Retrieval practise is planned into the curriculum through spaced learning and interleaving and as part of considered task design by the class teacher.  Teaching and learning resources and provided for class teachers so they can focus their time on subject knowledge and task design.  Knowledge notes are an elaboration in the core knowledge found in knowledge organisers.       

Knowledge notes focus pupils’ working memory to the key question that will be asked at the end of the lesson.  It reduces cognitive load and avoids the split-attention effect. The units are supported by vocabulary modules which provide both resources for teaching and learning vital vocabulary and provide teachers with Tier 2 and 3 vocabulary with the etymology and morphology needed for explicit instruction details relevant idioms and colloquialisms to make this learning explicit. 

We aim to provide a high challenge with low threat culture and put no ceiling on any child’s learning, instead providing the right scaffolding for each child for them to achieve

How do we know what children have learned? (Impact)

  • Questioning
  • Pupil Book Study
  • Talking to teachers
  • Low stakes ‘Drop-in’ observations (learning walks)
  • Quizzing and retrieval practise
  • Feedback and marking
  • Progress in book matches the curriculum intent